LONDON—A new consortium called ASCEND (Aerospace and Automotive Supply Chain Enabled Development) has been established in England to accelerate composite material technologies used in next-generation vehicles on land, sea and air.

ASCEND is comprised of 16 organizations, including GKN Aerospace, Hexcel Composites, McLaren Automotive and Solvay Composite Materials. The consortium will be led from GKN Aerospace’s Global Technology Centre in Bristol, England.

The initiative will focus on greater adoption of composite technologies today, the industrialization of new technologies, as well as accelerating production rates to meet future high-volume requirements.

“Accelerating the next-generation of lightweight, cost effective advanced composite technologies is critical for the aerospace and automotive industry, and its move to more energy-efficient aircraft and vehicles,” says John Pritchard, president of the civil airframe division of GKN Aerospace. “We will be able to deliver breakthroughs in technology, as well as benchmark levels of price, quality and repeatability.